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Youth Business Europe

Youth Business Europe is YBI’s regional programme, supported by the Citi Foundation, to help young entrepreneurs to start or grow a business.

Youth Business Europe

In 2015, Youth Business International and Citi Foundation launched Youth Business Europe, a regional programme to support young people to start, grow and sustain their business. Through this partnership, we are working together with the Citi Foundation to tackle youth unemployment and drive sustainable economic growth across Europe.

Programme overview

The program is designed to increase the number of vulnerable youth successfully starting sustainable businesses and creating new jobs. Despite significant investments in this area, there are systemic challenges persisting for these young people such as lack of access to finance, entrepreneurship training and mentoring. Through targeted country-level projects selected and implemented under a strategic learning agenda and rooted in cross-sector collaboration, the programme will result in laying the foundation for a youth entrepreneurship ecosystem in selected countries across the region.

Our regional approach is enabling eight YBI member organisations to work closely together and share knowledge, best practice and methodologies with the aim of tackling youth unemployment in Europe.

Since 2015 over 13,000 young people have been supported through the programme, of which:

  • 3,500+ youth-led businesses started or strengthened
  • 3,000+ jobs created
  • 1,000+ supported with business mentoring

Looking ahead

We realise that youth unemployment in Europe continues to soar (16.7% in June 2017) and, building on the successes of the first two years of Youth Business Europe, a key aim of the programme is to explore more ways to develop our support to young entrepreneurs, through digital and social innovations.

Between 2017 and 2019, Youth Business Europe will equip 8,700 young people across eight countries in Europe with entrepreneurship skills and support 2,500 young people to start or grow a business.

The partnership is one of the Citi Foundation’s flagship EMEA programmes, and is part of its Pathways to Progress initiative, which works to prepare and equip urban youth with the tools to thrive in today’s economy. 2017 saw the expansion of Pathways to Progress globally, with a $100million commitment from the Citi Foundation to reach 500,000 young people with entrepreneurship and employability training before 2020.

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